Category: mCRM

Oracle Sales Cloud (Fusion CRM) release 7, winning back core SFA!

Sales Cloud (Fusion CRM) release 7 is quite refreshing for those using the application since earlier releases. When I drove through the latest release 7, I knew the wait and the hype built around this release are justified.

Apart from bringing much anticipated enhancements around improving user experience, this release tried to take Mobile, Social & Analytics features to a new level.

From the perspective of an administrator, attempts made in the areas of Extensibility, Data Management and Environment Migration are appreciated.

Let me give you few specifics

User Experience: Navigation
Navigation was a major concern in previous releases. It was complicated and inconsistent or was just not there.

Now I see lot more availability and consistency in desktop UI.

Except Sales Calendar where the context of a calendar item isn’t completely built {this observation is addressed by FUSE (Simplified UI)}, navigation among core sales entities is fully enabled.

User Experience: Search
Enhancements in this area are focused around removing constraints, de-coupling search options and predefined lists and rectifying issues with filters etc.

Other notable improvements are role based saved searches (driven by admin), user level personalization of filters and introduction of record set attribute etc.

User Experience: Contextual Help
Contextual help is consistently available across all high use pages in the application. The help directory content is now fully aligned with the section form where it is invoked.

User Experience: FUSE
FUSE (Simplified UI) is for quick performance of regular tasks. A major enhancement to achieve buy-in from Sales folks.

You could perform all actions at par with desktop UI and can also quickly move to desktop UI to access more advanced features or more detailed information.

You could personalize the user experience by setting up required logo, theme etc. and setup a homepage announcement.

Though role based customization of simplified UI is possible, it is limited to overview/list pages only.

FUSE (Simplified UI) screenshot
FUSE (Simplified UI) screenshot

Core SFA: Sales Process Management
FUSE (Simplified UI) for quick action and Search, Navigation enhancements across core SFA modules brought this area back.

Other enhancements include
• Marketing insights for a Lead and Contact from Eloqua
• Customer Center Improvements –
> Competitive Presence – For Sales/Account Planning
> Graphical demonstration of Account Hierarchy (vs. Org. hierarchy)
> Tracking Contact ‘relationships’ by timeframe – An important detail sought by many customers/prospects alike.
• Lead Qualification/Management is now moved to Sales functional area

Core SFA: Sales Performance Management
Except few incremental improvements, enhancements in this area are minimal. From our experience simplification of Territory Management is very much required and it is a roadmap item.

Business Process Composer
Business Process composer is another big leap enhancement and kind of re-introduced in release 7.

As part of Oracle SOA Suite, the Oracle Business Process Management Suite contains a design-time tool for creating and adjusting BPMN 2.0 compliant BPEL processes, known as the Process Composer. Logically, as this tool can make significant changes to the way functionality runs, it is not therefore for use by normal end-users or administrators, and so is not found embedded inside Fusion Applications.

The Process Composer contains extensive options for creating new processes, as well as importing, adjusting, and redeploying the standard BPEL processes provided by Fusion Applications. Amongst other things, this includes support for manipulating Oracle Business Rules (OBR) to add complex conditional processing logic, as well as Human Workflow for interacting with users for hands-on activities, such as approvals.

Business process flows (e.g. approval flows) created using the process composer could be triggered using object workflows (e.g. of an Opportunity) that initiate based on some change in an object e.g. field update.

The seeded templates in Oracle Business Process Composer provide services, business rules, and tasks, which we can use for configuring customized processes.

Business Process Composer-Seeded flow screenshot
Business Process Composer-Seeded flow screenshot

 

Marketing: Eloqua Integration
Eloqua integration with Sales cloud is expected to augment customer interaction history in Sales Cloud, provide bi-directional lead nurturing between marketing and sales along with fully enabled Marketing automation and multi-channel campaign capabilities. Following table demonstrates what Eloqua Marketing cloud has to offer in comparison to Fusion Marketing (though it is purely driven by what is missing in Fusion Marketing)

Eloqua Marketing Cloud Vs. Fusion Marketing
Eloqua Marketing Cloud Vs. Fusion Marketing

Reports
Most anticipated feature in the area of reports is ability to drill/navigate from a report to a transactional record using Action Links and it is available in release 7. It is facilitated through calling web pages instead of using ADF contextual event.

Action Links are available for the following objects:
• Customer
• Contact
• Lead
• Opportunity

Other enhancements include
> Use alerts to proactively detect issues and business potential (condition based report scheduling)
> Add enhanced visualizations, like a waterfall chart to your reports
> Embedding OSN conversations in custom report/dashboard (i.e. see all conversations for a record in one place using report view)

Environment Migration
This allows export and import of setup data and customizations across Oracle Sales Cloud environments on the same release and patch.

Life Cycle Management
Life Cycle Management

Functional Setup Manager (FSM) is used to migrate setup data.
Customizations Migration used to migrate:
• All Sales Cloud customizations, including
> Customizations created with Application Composer, and Page Composer
> Sales Cloud security changes (role hierarchy changes)
• Customizations for other Fusion Applications (not just Sales and Marketing)

Currently available ‘Extensions Manager’ used to migrate customizations created with Application Composer (Sales and Marketing only) would be phased out.

Refer to My Oracle Support Doc ID 1534289.1 (for Setup Data) and Oracle Fusion Applications Extensibility Guide(for Customizations) migration possibilities.

Modularity Consolidation
Now we can
> Call attributes from one object to the other. This is limited to ‘Common’ application area and limited to Sales Account.
> Build relationships among objects from across application areas e.g. now we can connect a custom object created under Sales application area with a custom object created under ‘common’ application area.
> Build cross application validations e.g. When a sales account (Customer Center application area) status is turned ‘Inactive’ prevent sales user from creating an opportunity (sales application area)

Brief detail of other enhancements

Groovy Web Services Invocation
This is great. Now we could invoke a web service using the groovy in object workflows.

E.g. when an opportunity has reached ‘Closed/Won’ stage, invoke a service to create a quotation through Big Machine and update finally approved quote value back to sales cloud.

Mobile: Fusion Mobile Sales (SMARTPHONE)
Oracle Fusion Mobile Sales includes several enhancements in Release 7, including:

• Child Objects for Leads
• Forecasts
• Contact Photo
• Android Support

Mobile: Fusion TAP
Oracle Sales Cloud on iPad using Fusion Tap has become ‘general availability’ from release 7 which is a specialized application for tablet devices.
With Release 7, Oracle Fusion Tap is available in 21 languages.

Mobile Analytics: Fusion Mobile Sales
Apart from 6 standard reports, release 7 allows users to access custom reports as part of Mobile Sales application. Users can change report views and apply report filters.

Mobile Analytics: Fusion TAP
From release 7, users can access custom reports.

Social Network (OSN)
Social objects available to be enabled in Release 7 are Customer, Opportunity, Lead, Partner Account, Reference, Competitor, Organization, Person and Group. Sales Cloud administration can decide which objects to enable as social, and which fields to expose on the objects’ Wall.

Desktop UI Configuration
In Release 7, we can edit subtabs using Page Composer.

In summary, Oracle Sales Cloud release 7 is simple to use, considerably improved and strengthened its core SFA solution and ahead of competition in providing Sales Performance Management and Customer Data Management functionalists.

I would like to thank my colleagues at CRMIT Solutions for their support in writing this article.

C.A.Mohammed
Senior Principle Business Consultant, CRMIT

Originally Published on Ahmed’s Blog

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Nokia Developer Day 2012

We attended the Nokia Developer Day 2012 Event, held at Bangalore, India on 7th August 2012. It was an eventful day with Very interesting presentations from Nokia and Microsoft, and the keynote address was delivered by President and CEO of Nokia, Mr. Stephen Elop.

For those who couldn’t attend this event, sharing our notes from this event, in Mind Map format. This covers various topics such as Nokia’s current strategies, Microsoft Windows 8 Mobile, Mobile Developer best practices, Nokia’s Location platform “Where” and more…

Click Here to view the Mind Map in Full Size : http://blog.crmit.com/?attachment_id=845

CRMIT’s Best Selling Productivity Applications for CRM On Demand

Published In : https://blogs.oracle.com/apaccrmpartner/entry/crmit_s_best_selling_productivity

When one thinks about high-performance indicators within business verticals, two factors that always stand out are customer satisfaction and experience. Effectively answering all emails including service requests, complaints, grievances, appreciations and even requests for more business is critical to have a satisfied customer base. Likewise, promoting collaboration among CRM users and making it easy for them to work together with CRM On Demand via android phones is equally significant.

CRMIT, an Oracle ISV and one of the leading CRM On-Demand System Integrators in APAC, has
developed mCRM for Android, Social CRM++ and Email Workbench. These applications facilitate
customer relationship management and data in a well organized and process centric way.

mCRM for Android
mCRM for Android is an application offered by CRMIT that allows users to manage their Oracle CRM
On-Demand data at their fingertips. It not only provides an easy access to key customer information,
but it also allows viewing and editing the information, as per requirement.

It can be downloaded and installed from the android market and one can directly login with their
CRMOD username and password. And, if you choose to bring mCRM for Android into play, you get
real time access to customer information. Moreover, checking currently viewed data and task
appointments becomes a pushover.

Social CRM++
Social CRM++ has evolved as a back-end system for managing customer relationships and data in a
very efficient and process-centric manner. Social CRM++ for customer service has the potential to
bring new and dynamic methods for improving customer service, and in doing so, it is creating
opportunities for new and existing providers.

This cloud ready On-Demand solution connects CRM users seamlessly and improves collaboration
between them without loss of confidential information. Without logging into external systems or
signing up, one can draw on social CRM++ and can post text files and links to other CRMOD users of
the organization. It not only increases interaction between users, but is also easily available in
multiple deployment models.
Email Workbench
CRMIT’s Email Workbench solution is a Web based plug-in that solves the great puzzle of CRM –
Email Co-existence. This SaaS based component allows Service Organizations to work in a single
window and also helps to send, receive and process E-mails from customers in a centralized way. So,
with Email Workbench one is always assured of improved issue tracking and quicker response times,
irrespective of which individual is working on a particular problem.

When a customer sends an email, a service request is created and service representatives can directly
reply from CRMOD, without using an external mail client. One can reply again for creating an open
activity. With this efficient plug-in, emails are automatically converted to service requests, response
time is quick and tracking of issues becomes better.

To see CRM++ Email Workbench in action, view this YouTube Video:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4jDK01_n7Gs&feature=player_embedded

Launching mCRM for Android

mCRM from CRMIT takes you closer to your customer by bringing Oracle CRM On Demand data
to your finger tips. Find what you need, when you need it by installing this application on your
android smart phones/tablets. mCRM for Android enables your teams to work productively on the
road by accessing the customer information anywhere, anytime.
mCRM for Android is designed to work 100% offline,
and you can synchronize all additions / changes to Oracle CRM On Demand once you get connected.

Visual Navigation Of Customer Support Calls

Today I noticed an interesting question in Quora (http://www.quora.com/How-long-will-it-be-until-I-can-navigate-automated-customer-service-calls-visually) about Visual Navigation of Customer Support Calls

How long will it be until I can navigate automated customer service calls visually?
My phone has a screen on it. I don’t want to listen carefully to your menu options, even if they have recently changed.

Very interesting scenario. I responded with an answer like this. What are your thoughts?

Ah, super practical question, Why not?

But technically, I think there are HUGE challenges, Even with sophisticated Computer Telephony Integrations in place, Voice based calls and kept separate from data transfer, hence using a smart phone to handle both voice and data (choices for you to choose from) is difficult, at least as of today.

So, the immediate options seem to be:

1. Pure voice (Current system which you described)
2. Pure data (Use a Website / PC to log your tickets)
3. Voice and data (iPhone / Android / Blackberry app where calls can be made and menu options can be ‘download’ed on the fly so that you can choose from there, instead of listening, use Voice only for talking, not for hearing / choosing)

Future option:

Make a voice call : get the menu options as a data back to your phone : Dynamic display : Choose : Speak / Act

On second thoughts, there are few phone apps which do this already, isn’t it? For example, the app used to query for balance in a prepaid account? If Phone companies can extend it to call centers too, it will be a good start!

Once the telephony system is there to support this, CRM systems can provide a much better navigation for phone users, depending on which device they are using

Naga Chokkanathan, Director (Innovation), CRMIT

Pricing Models For Android Enterprise Applications

Last November, our Senior Director Naga Chokkanathan presented a session in “Droidcon 2011” Event, which is world’s largest series of Android conferences. His speech is now available as a video, Thanks to Droidcon Team.

To view the 38 minutes video in youtube, use this link : http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EA94bWFv6WA

To view the slides : http://www.slideshare.net/CrmitCorp/pricing-models-for-android-enterprise-applications

Evernote Hello : A Personal CRM

I’m sure many of us encounter memory loss incidents either at a social gathering, shopping where we see a familiar person. It takes us time to recollect who they are and where we have met them. In this process we either do not step forward to communicate with that person or even if we dare to confront, spur of moment we tend to forget their name or other personal details about them. This could either be a good one or land up being unpleasant if the person doesn’t remember you or vice versa.

In view of this, Evernote Corporation developed an application that allows smart phone users to capture and record information on their devices. How it works is very simple, May be the developers based the ever note after watching the movie ‘memento’, where in the main character has a short term memory loss and starts clicking pictures of people on his Polaroid to know whom he has to associate with and pens down how he is associated with the person.

This app (called “Evernote Hello” : http://www.evernote.com/hello/ ) is almost on similar lines, the only difference being that it is digitally saved and note could be a piece of formatted text, a full webpage, a photograph, a voice memo, or a handwritten ink note. Notes can also have file attachments. Notes can then be sorted into folders, tagged, annotated, edited, given comments, searched and exported as part of a notebook. The whole application as such enables one to maintain a very cordial relationship with another person that they encounter during a short period of time.

From a business perspective this application serves as a wonderful app to remember clients/customers/suppliers/vendors etc. It actually more or less brings out the professional side by even sending a mail after the initial encounter with the customer. It is like a business card confirmation that is sent across. When encountering your customer or client during non business hours there are chances of building an excellent rapport with the customer by recollecting their past encounter etc. This over a period of time acts as a catalyst for arriving at business proposals or even sharing information across organizations. This more or less like a personal CRM app for business users who can keep a record of people they meet on the move.

However there are certain limitations to the application, how many us actually make it a point to keep doing this over a period of time and keep asking people whom we meet to enter their information. What if the person is not so sociable and doesn’t like being photographed?

The other drawback is the automated mail that is sent when adding the person. It could actually disturb the person and could change his impression as it could sound too pushy and obnoxious. Additionally it has a limitation for the free version which is advertising supported, has limited storage of only 60 MB and has a usage meter and cannot be used offline.

But going with the numbers there are over 11 million users as of July 2011, this goes to show how useful the app is and also shows how well the app developers have researched their way to develop such an app realizing that most of us do tend to forget people that we meet in a short duration.

– Deepalakshmi Subramanian

You can download this Free App for your iPhone here: http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/evernote-hello/id484359282?mt=8